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CONTENTS
Volume 2, Number 2, April 2006
 

Abstract
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Key Words
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Address
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Abstract
Structural health monitoring results obtained with the electro-mechanical (E/M) impedance technique and Lamb wave transmission methods during fatigue crack propagation of an Arcan specimen instrumented with piezoelectric wafer active sensors (PWAS) are presented. The specimen was subjected in mixed-mode fatigue loading and a crack was propagated in stages. At each stage, an image of the crack and the location of the crack tip were recorded and the PWAS readings were taken. Hence, the crack-growth in the specimen could be correlated with the PWAS readings. The E/M impedance signature was recorded in the 100 - 500 kHz frequency range. The Lamb-wave transmission method used the pitch-catch approach with a 3-count sine tone burst of 474 kHz transmitted and received between various PWAS pairs. Fatigue loading was applied to initiate and propagate the crack damage of controlled magnitude. As damage progressed, the E/M impedance signatures and the waveforms received by receivers were recorded at predetermined intervals and compared.

Key Words
Arcan specimen; crack growth; fatigue loading; piezoelectric wafer active sensor; electromechanical impedance; pitch-catch; Lamb wave.

Address
Department of Mechanical Engineering, University of South Carolina, Columbia, SC 29208, USA

Abstract
The Terra-Scope system is an affordable 4-D down-hole seismic monitoring system based on independent, microprocessor-controlled sensor Pods. The Pods are nominally 50 mm in diameter, and about 120 mm long. They are expected to cost approximately $6000 each. An internal 16-bit, extremely low power MCU controls all aspects of instrumentation, eight programmable gain amplifiers, and local signal storage. Each Pod measures 3-D acceleration, tilt, azimuth, temperature, and other parametric variables such as pore water pressure and pH. Each Pod communicates over a standard digital bus (RS-485) through a completely web-based GUI interface, and has a power consumption of less than 400 mW. Three-dimensional acceleration is measured by pure digital force-balance MEMS-based accelerometers. These accelerometers have a dynamic range of more than 115 dB and a frequency response from DC to 1000 Hz with a noise floor of less than 30 ngrms/Hz. Accelerations above 0.2 g are measured by a second set of MEMS- based accelerometers, giving a full 160 dB dynamic range. This paper describes the system design and the cooperative shared-time scheduler implemented for this project. Restraints accounted for include multiple data streams, integration of multiple free agents, interaction with the asynchronous world, and hardened time stamping of accelerometer data. The prototype of the device is currently undergoing evaluation. The first array will be installed in the spring of 2006.

Key Words
vertical seismic array; MEMS-based sensor; and real-time system.

Address
Center for Information Technology Research in the Interest of Society, University of California, Berkeley California, USA

Abstract
In this study, a wavelet-based covariance-driven system identification technique is proposed for damage assessment of structures under ambient excitation. Assuming the ambient excitation to be a white-noise process, the covariance computation is shown to be able to separate the effect of random excitation from the response measurement. Wavelet transform (WT) is then used to convert the covariance response in the time domain to the WT magnitude plot in the time-scale plane. The wavelet coefficients along the curves where energy concentrated are extracted and used to estimate the modal properties of the structure. These modal property estimations lead to the calculation of the stiffness matrix when either the spectral density of the random loading or the mass matrix is given. The predicted stiffness matrix hence provides a direct assessment on the possible location and severity of damage which results in stiffness alteration. To demonstrate the proposed wavelet-based damage assessment technique, a numerical example on a 3 degree-of-freedom (DOF) system and an experimental study on a three-story building model, which are all under a broad-band excitation, are presented. Both numerical and experimental results illustrate that the proposed technique can provide an accurate assessment on the damage location. It is however noted that the assessment of damage severity is not as accurate, which might be due to the errors associated with the mode shape estimations as well as the assumption of proportional damping adopted in the formulation.

Key Words
wavelet transform; covariance response; modal identification; damage assessment

Address
Z. Sun; State Key Laboratory for Disaster Reduction in Civil Engineering, Tongji University, Shanghai, China
C. C. Chang; Department of Civil Engineering, Hong Kong University of Science and Technology, Clear Water Bay, Kowloon, Hong Kong

Abstract
Recently, the Hilbert-Huang transform (HHT) has gained considerable attention as a novel technique of signal processing, which shows promise for the system identification and damage detection of structures. This study investigates the effectiveness and accuracy of the HHT method for the system identification and damage detection of structures through a series of experiments. A multi-degree-of-freedom (MDOF) structural model has been constructed with modular members, and the columns of the model can be replaced or removed to simulate damages at different locations with different severities. The measured response data of the structure due to an impulse loading is first decomposed into modal responses using the empirical mode decomposition (EMD) approach with a band-pass filter technique. Then, the Hilbert transform is subsequently applied to each modal response to obtain the instantaneous amplitude and phase angle time histories. A linear least-square fit procedure is used to identify the natural frequencies and damping ratios from the instantaneous amplitude and phase angle for each modal response. When the responses at all degrees of freedom are measured, the mode shape and the physical mass, damping and stiffness matrices of the structure can be determined. Based on a comparison of the stiffness of each story unit prior to and after the damage, the damage locations and severities can be identified. Experimental results demonstrate that the HHT method yields quite accurate results for engineering applications, providing a promising tool for structural health monitoring.

Key Words
Hilbert-Huang transform (HHT); system identification; damage detection; empirical mode decomposition (EMD); experimental study.

Address
College of Aerospace Engineering, Nanjing University of Aeronautics and Astronautics, Nanjing 210016, China

Abstract
In this paper, the application of magnetoelasticity in static tension monitoring for large steel cables is discussed. Magnetoelastic (EM) stress sensors make contact-free tension monitoring possible for hanger cables and post-tensioned cables on suspension and cable-stayed bridges. By quantifying the correlation of magnetic relative permeability with tension and temperature, the EM sensors inspect the load levels in the steel cables. Cable tension monitoring on Qiangjiang (QJ) 4th Bridge demonstrates the reliability of the EM sensors.

Key Words
magnetoelasticity; relative permeability; tension; temperature.

Address
Guodun Wang, Ming L. Wang, and Yang Zhao; Department of Civil and Materials Engineering, the University of Illinois at Chicago,Chicago, IL60607, USA
Yong Chen and Bingnan Sun; Department of Civil Engineering, Zhejiang University, Hangzhou, China

Abstract
This paper deals with damage detection using active Lamb waves. The wavelet transform and empirical mode decomposition methods are discussed for measuring the Lamb wave? arrival time of the group velocity. An experimental system to diagnose the damage in the composite plate is developed. A method to optimize this system is also given for practical applications of active Lamb waves, which involve optimal arrangement of the piezoelectric elements to produce single mode Lamb waves. In the paper, the single mode Lamb wave means that there exists no overlapping among different Lamb wave modes and the original Lamb wave signal with the boundary reflection signals. Based on this optimized PZT arrangement method, five damage localizations on different plates are completed and the results using wavelet transform and empirical mode decomposition methods are compared.

Key Words
structural health monitoring; active Lamb wave diagnostic method; signal processing methods.

Address
The Aeronautic Key Laboratory of Smart Material and Structure, Nanjing University of Aeronautics and Astronautics, Nanjing, P.R. China

Abstract
Monitoring large-scale civil engineering structures such as offshore platforms and high-large buildings requires a large number of sensors of different types. Innovative sensor data information technologies are very extremely important for data transmission, storage and retrieval of large volume sensor data generated from large sensor networks. How to obtain the optimal sensor set and placement is more and more concerned by researchers in vibration-based SHM. In this paper, a method of determining the sensor location which aims to extract the dynamic parameter effectively is presented. The method selects the number and place of sensor being installed on or in structure by through the tolerance domain statistical inference algorithm combined with second order sensitivity technology. The method proposal first finds and determines the sub-set sensors from the theoretic measure point derived from analytical model by the statistical tolerance domain procedure under the principle of modal effective independence. The second step is to judge whether the sorted out measured point set has sensitive to the dynamic change of structure by utilizing second order characteristic value sensitivity analysis. A 76-high-building benchmark mode and an offshore platform structure sensor optimal selection are demonstrated and result shows that the method is available and feasible.

Key Words
sensor optimal selection; tolerance domain; second order sensitivity.

Address
School of Civil Engineering, Harbin Institute of Technology, Harbin, Heilongjiang, 150090, China


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